Nexus 7 Tablet Hands On: Brave New World

By Brent Rose on at

We just got to love up Google's new Nexus 7 tablet with our personal fingers. It's light, it's compact, and holy crap, it's faster than hell. In short, you won't believe this is a £160 tablet.

First thing you'll notice when you pick it up is that it's incredibly solid. It's got a hard aluminum edges, and a rubberised back that feels soft and grippy. It easily fits in a jacket pocket, and even (just barely) in my jeans pocket (though I wouldn't recommend it). It has a front-facing camera, but no rear camera, which is good because you shouldn't be taking photos with your freaking tablet anyway. Volume up/down rocker, power button, micro USB and a headphone jack. Sadly, there's no expandable storage, but Google is emphasising its cloud portfolio, so that makes sense.

The boot time is very quick. The screen is bright and vivid at first glance. Then you start scrolling around the operating system and it's perfectly smooth. Google used the word "butter," and so far, that looks pretty apt.

Jellybean is rather lovely, and it really utilises the tablet-sized screen much better. For example there are 6 shortcuts (plus the app drawer) in the home row.

We'll need to spend plenty more time with the Nexus 7 before we do a full review, but snap judgement: There is zero reason to buy a Kindle Fire over this. It's brighter, sharper, faster, and infinitely more capable. Your move, Amazon.